New York Fashion Week is only a week away.  Every year, the runway is graced with fashion week fetus' and second-time-around rookies.  While we may have our favorites and constantly stay updated with social media to keep tabs on our old loves throughout the week, it's important to give support and appreciation to those who are newly emerging in the runway fashion world. 



As a advocate for quality cotton that is ethically made, I was pleasantly surprised to see that this year at NYFW, a United States cotton brand, Supima, would be holding a design contest for graduating senior students from the top design schools around the country.  This show will be the best-of-both-worlds: a brand which strives to produce the best quality cotton and a newly emerging designer who will show off their skills and expertise. 

** Photographs of previous winners collection courtesy of upima website **


Silky fabrics and iridescent hues, design duo Beckett and Piotrek are masters at transforming sleepwear wear into streetwear.  From past collections of theirs, we have seen an abundance of flowy trousers, luxurious slip dresses and wide hems on both top and bottom.  This upcoming collection, featuring garments for Spring/Summer 2017 is expected to be no exception; who's ready to flaunt nightgown glamour on the streets?  

** Photographs of past collections courtesy of the AREA NYC website **


Maybe you know him from Season 4 of Project Runway or maybe you know him because of his beautiful organza dress illustrations on his social media accounts.  But, regardless, Christian Siriano's masterful eveningwear creations call for any fashionista's undivided attention.  While his garments are created with classic elements in mind, a-line and pencil silhouettes, empire waists and princess seams, his pieces are also full of character. with the use of feathered and lace adornments and geometrical prints.

** Photographs of past collections courtesy of Christian Siriano website **


As the ultimate New York City cool-girl, Sandy Liang breathes urban and high-street vibes into all of her pieces.  Incorporating the use of layering and interesting hemlines, her collections thus far have reflected the "I woke up like this" motto by mix-and-matching classic prints with essential wardrobe pieces that are perfect for a variety of  lifestyles.  Liang proves that dressing cool on your daily commute on the subway, shouldn't require a sweatpant uniform.

** Photographs of previous collections courtesy of Sandy Liang's website ** 


For those who are sick of the monochromatic neutral outfits and want a little something more in their ensembles, LIbertine is the brand to wear.  With multi-colored, sequined embellishments and deep colored graphic prints, all of the collections thus far, in addition to those to come, are sure vibrantly knock your socks off.

** Photographs of past collections courtesy of Libertine website ** 


Incorporating masculinity into feminine outfits isn't as easy as it sounds. While this style is very trendy at the moment, design duo, Beaufille, master this look with their flowy pieces that are not overly girly and or too manly.  During fashion week, we typically see formal-wear or street-wear looks.  But, Beaufille, on-the-other-hand, represents that fine line between dressy and casual to create a looks that are perfect for anyone of any style.

** Photographs from past collections courtesy of Beaufille website **


GEORGINE is the label that I am most excited about, especially after doing research on the latest-and-greatest of New York Fashion Week.   Her pieces represent effortless glam and are the epitome of what New York Fashion Week represents to me, personally.  When I think of NYFW, I automatically think of ensembles with pieces that are so cohesively unique that it looks like you didn't try, but yet, you did.  All of GEORGINE's, named after the designer and creative director herself, collections so far have had specks of shimmer and have made use of structure. GEORGINE is a brand for everyone who wants to feel runway-ready everyday. 

** Photographs of past collections courtesy of GEORGINE website and Pinterest **




After watching The True Cost and deciding that I no longer wanted to feature clothing brands that weren't sustainable or cruelty-free, I have been searching around for local Chicago designers to interview and feature on my blog.   

My series, "Sustainable in Chicago" will feature local Chicago designers that create sustainable clothing.  I hope that you all will not only appreciate local fashion but these interviews will also encourage you to shop sustainable fashion. 

The first designer I had the privilege of talking to was Leandro Mulet, Chicago-based based fashion designer.  I asked him about his fashion inspiration, guilty pleasures, and his mindset behind designing sustainable.

* * *

BWAB: "What would you say your design aesthetic is?"

LEANDRO: "I like to describe my designs as ready-to-wear with a touch of couture.  My designs are different from everyone else; avant-garde and ready-to-wear.  I like to pay attention to details and make my pieces look outstanding."

"... my designs are different from everyone else; avant-garde and ready-to-wear."

BWAB: "Where do you get the inspiration from to design in such a way?"

LEANDRO: "I get inspiration from everywhere, you just never know where inspiration is going to strike you."

BWAB: "That's so true.  As Chanel said, 'Fashion is in the air and in the streets'. What would you say is your favorite collection you have designed so far?"

LEANDRO: "Haha!  How can you pick your favorite?  It's challenging.  You fall in love with each collection you on in a different way.  It's impossible to pick."

BWAB: "I can imagine!  Do you consider your designs sustainable fashion?"

LEANDRO: "Yes, my designs are sustainable.  I recycle a lot of fabric and pieces.  For example, I try to reuse as much fabric as possible and I try to keep it in a sustainable way. I don't go out of my way to use pieces such as leather, I want to use pieces that are recycled and then use them in a healthy way."

"I don't go out of my way to use pieces such as leather, i want to use pieces that are recycled..."

BWAB: "I completely agree.  It's awesome to see designers starting to incorporate sustainability into their fashion.  So, why did you choose to locate in Chicago versus New York?"

LEANDRO: "I think Chicago is a good platform at this moment to make a stand in fashion. Chicago has been trying so hard to become one of the major fashion capitals. Chicago has completely different demographics than what fashion stands for.  With that being said, I'm trying to bring more sustainable fashion into the industry.  Instead of buying overseas, I try to buy locally to make an impactful difference."

BWAB: "That's such a good point.  I can't wait for the day where Chicago will be known for fashion.  So, when did you know you wanted to be a designer?"

"...I'm trying to bring more sustainable fashion into the industry... i try to buy locally to make an impactful difference."

LEANDRO: "I always knew that I wanted to be a designer.  I've loved working with fabrics since I was 10.  I would practice on my Grandma's pedal sewing machine.  So, pretty much my entire life I knew that designing clothing was what I wanted to do." 

BWAB: "It seems like designing has been a lifelong dream of yours.  Who would you say your favorite designer was growing up, or currently?"

LEANDRO: "Alexander McQueen.  HIs impact on the fashion industry nowadays is just incredible.  Especially when it's hard to make a difference in this industry.  His impact in the 21st century has a lot to do with his extreme point of view."

BWAB: "McQueen is also one of my favorites.  His designs were out-of-this-world unique and abstract.  But for those fashion lovers who want to get into the fashion industry, what is some advice that you have for them?"

"try to make a difference and be unique. find your dream and find your outlet."

LEANDRO: "I would have to say that dreams are pointless unless you work hard.  Make sure you follow your passion and do your research.  Try to make a difference and be unique.  Find your dream and find your outlet.  You can accomplish anything with motivation and perseverance."

- Interview with director Leandro Mulet, Conducted by Amanda Kaplan (BWAB)